Astros to place reliever Matt Albers on paternity leave list

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According to Brian McTaggart of MLB.com, the Astros will place reliever Matt Albers on the paternity leave list prior to tomorrow’s game against the Blue Jays. Josh Zeid will be called up from Triple-A Oklahoma City to replace him on the active roster.

Albers and his wife are expecting their first child. The 31-year-old right-hander is permitted to be away from the team for 24-72 hours, so he should be back later this week.

Albers, a Houston native, joined the Astros over the winter on a one-year, $2.45 million contract. He has thrown 4 1/3 scoreless innings with six strikeouts and no walks thus far.

Padres reportedly interested in J.T. Realmuto

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LAS VEGAS — Jon Morosi of MLB Network reports that the Padres have “genuine interest” in Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto.

The Mets have been the most frequently mentioned suitor for Realmuto’s services, but over the weekend a report emerged that that their talks with Miami had lost some momentum, so perhaps that creates an opening for some other teams. For their part, the Padres have a loaded farm system which may interest the Marlins a great deal, even if they’ve publicly said they want major league talent for their best player. San Diego’s interest in Realmuto is obviously, of course. He’s probably the best catcher in the game at the moment. If, as some suspect, the Padres are poised to turn the corner into competitiveness in 2019, Realmuto could play a key role in that.

Realmuto, who will be 28 on Opening Day, hit .277/.340/.484 with 21 homers last year, which earned him both All-Star and Silver Slugger honors. He’s also one of the best defensive catchers in the game. It’d take a haul of talent to get him, but he is easily the most appealing position player on the trading block this offseason.